The exponential rise in the number of drug abusers as well as illicit human trafficking is undeniably one of the major social and malevolent issues in the society, which needs to be addressed on high priority. These threats can potentially challenge the health and security of nations and people. In this regard, the United Nations General Assembly started awareness day on 26th June – popularly known as International Day against Drug Abuse and Illicit Trafficking.
The Historical Perspective
This crucial day was spawned by the United Nations on December 1987 to spread awareness and a call for an immediate action to stop illicit human trafficking. The day indirectly represents the first opium war initiated by the Chinese dynasty against British emperor in the 18th century; leading to the destruction of opium, complete stoppage of the drug trade and severe punishment to those, involved in the trade. The day strengthens the backing of the member nations to the US by canvassing the control of the global drug trade. Since its conceptualization, we are now entering into the 27th year of tribute, by attempting a prompt response through regulations and supporting wide range of pro-health services.
The Global Accolade
This year the United Nation is running a campaign “Listen First” against the comprehensive drug transactions and the “Blue Heart Campaign” representing the sadness of those being trafficked, to encounter a crime against human dignity.
Additionally, various other campaigns are taking place globally to extend support in stopping the drug distribution and freezing human trafficking worldwide. The national authorities and various institutions of different countries across the globe will be encouraged to host many activities, such as political demonstrations, cultural initiatives, e-campaigning, public demonstrations, etc.
Conferences, symposiums or panel discussions will be sponsored to increase awareness, provide education and knowledge to completely eradicate the problem, and initiate effective rehabilitation for the torture survivors. In order to enhance the public understanding of the issues and their aftermath, the artistic and cultural demonstrations will be organized to cultivate harmony and alter the mindset to accelerate the healing process. These events can be anything like musical performances, traditional folk dances, theatre shows, etc.
Some of the nations will be actively promoting advocacy, including meetings with political leaders, public protests, writing a petition or insisting governments to analyze the challenges and initiate supportive actions, as well as precautions. Various other programmes will be initiated to exhibit the support such as sports events, candle light vigils, etc. Some of the reputed centres are planning to make children them understand the dangerous effects of trafficking and drug abuse at a very young age.
India: Uniting together to honour!
The Indian government, the Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment is all set to exhibit its support by organizing an event in India’s capital, New Delhi, to mark International Day against Drug Abuse and Illicit Trafficking. The delegates from different state level departments will brief about various actions undertaken to focus on the issues.
Various NGO’s and UNODC partners are planning to organize different awareness spreading campaigns for people of different age groups; specially emphasizing on topics such as drug abuse and their harmful effects or coping up with the torture, etc. The inmates from the central and district level jails will also be encouraged to say no to drugs.
How can you help?
You are advised to support the cause by exhibiting a strong, symbolic action, which would spread the awareness. The choice of decision can be very personal, depending upon the feasibility and affordability. There are various ways to support; may be by using some ancillary material, such as t-shirts, posters, banners, etc. You can join the global campaigning network through social media. Featuring campaign logos, on websites or public profiles can be counted as a contribution.
On the International Day against Drug Abuse and Illicit Trafficking, a small help can be extended by organizing a small event in your local community or society to spread awareness and educate people around you. Donate to one of the many charities and/or NGO’s that can help victim recover from the aftermaths of drug abuse and illicit trafficking.